New Laptop

With my new Starlight Xpress guide camera I needed a laptop to use for Astronomy.  Couldn’t I have used my MacBook Pro?  well, yes and no.   Yes, I could have used it.  However, there’s a problem, it runs OSX.  I could have made it run windows, but then I’d have to put it outside next to my Telescope.  It’s an expensive laptop, and I really didn’t want to have it outside all night getting covered in frost.

I decided that a dedicated laptop just for astronomy was the way to go.  So off to PC world, I went and picked up one of these.

A HP Pavillion Model 15-au077sa.

Here’s the key specs that I was looking for.

  • Core I5 CPU
  • 8GB RAM
  • 256 GB M.2 SSD
  • 15.6″ Screen (1366 x 768)
  • 45 W AC power adapter

This machine has one purpose in life, to control my telescope.   I over specified it as I wanted the machine to run nicely and not be strained when it’s in use.  Turns out that I didn’t over spec this machine by a long way.   Actually it turned out to be perfect for my needs.


The intention was to have it run PHD2, BackYard EOS and ASCOM. However, since that time well, things changed.  But more on that later.


The best part about this laptop is that there a 12V power supply so I can run this from a battery without the need for an inverter.  At 45W, this laptop pulls less power than anything that I’ve used.   This means that the problems I’d had in the past with my Sony VAIO having trouble running from a battery won’t be an issue.


They also do one for my MacBook Pro which I already had and it worked great, so I got this for my HP as well.  It’s great.

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